Author(s): Albert Seaton
The term "Cossack" was originally applied to the Tartar raiders who roamed the Southern Plain, the word coming from the Turko-Tartar, meaning at first "free adventurer." In the 15th century when it began to refer to a people ditinguished by their own tongue and customs who formed separate communities. These strong, free Cossack communities were seen as a threat to the Tsar until in 1671 they were obliged to swear fealty. From that date onwards Cossacks served in all of Russia s wars, most famously when 50,000 Don Cossacks fought against Napoleon of which nearly half died in battle or on campaign. The Cossacks eventually developed their own military structure with rank titles, uniforms and equipment all of which are detailed in in this volume."
Lieutenant-Colonel Albert Seaton (Retd.) is the author of many books on 19th century military history and he is an expert on modern Russian history. His other titles for Osprey in the Men-at-Arms series include MAA 5 The Austro-Hungarian Army of the Napoleonic Wars and MAA 16 Fredrick the Great s Army."